I think the best way to narrate today is backwards - I'll start with the end, and work my way to this morning. Right now, I'm exhausted, emotionally spent, and sort of ... lost.
DH just took Micah up to bed. Micah ended the evening absolutely adorable. He was running (well, crawling) 900 miles an hour in circles around the house, shrieking with laughter, chasing the dog, and just simply being a happy baby. He and the dog fought over toys, and Micah climbed into his toy basket to play. I swear I did not think he was ever going to run out of energy tonight! He was intermittently coming over to me for a hug and kisses, to rest his head and suck his thumb, and then back off and running again. He is also standing more and more without holding on to anything, and yesterday he stood himself up from the floor (not holding on to any toys).
I have to say, I'm amazed we ended this evening on such a high. We were extremely late giving Micah dinner - it was 7:00 pm before we finally sat him down, and he was pretty cranky, extremely hungry, and in no mood to eat ANYTHING we put in front of him. He mostly mushed his food on his clothing and fed it to the dog. We eventually stumbled on some food he was willing to eat - kidney beans. Yes, that is right, kidney beans. Those are his FAVORITE beans. I think he could eat them every day. He likes them straight from the can, or picked out of minestrone soup. It doesn't really matter to him - he just likes his beans. We offered up black beans tonight - which met with the dreaded "ick" face, accompanied by the cringe and the tongue flipping out the food onto his chest (his "blech" move). I really hate that new little trick. He looks as if he will eat something...in it goes...chew...chew...blech...out it comes again! Once he decided the black beans were a no-go, he wouldn't try ANYTHING else on his tray. We had to empty it off and start all over again. We tried cottage cheese - no luck. I then grabbed a spoon and gave him some fruit sauce (I think it was a banana/strawberry mix). After the fruit, we tried kidney beans. VICTORY!! Micah did his happy dance and said "Mmmm" as he chewed his beans.
We arrived home so late for dinner because we spent the previous hour stuck in traffic. I was less than 10 miles from the house, and it took more than one hour to get home. Micah was hungry and tired, and pretty much shrieked the entire way home. No real shock there. I knew that I was chancing things the way I had scheduled our day, but I just did not realize it would be that awful.
You see, today was finally picture day! We took Micah in for his 11 month photos today at 4:00. I will try and scan them later, but I also picked up the 10 month photos we had done last month. They are all so cute!! I have to say, I had a particularly difficult time choosing. After the first pass at the photos, there were 20 photos I loved. I finally narrowed it down to 12, and ultimately only ordered 6, but I keep thinking about those other 6 I didn't order, and the other 8 I ruled out after the first pass. I think there were some amazing shots in there, but I just couldn't order them all. There were some of him climbing these stairs, and some GORGEOUS closeups of his face. The photographer printed some awesome photos (some in black and white and sepia) and showcased them in frames, and I really wanted to buy everything. I swear, I could have dropped thousands of dollars on those photos! Naturally, the entire process took a LONG time. We arrived for the photos at 4, and we did not get out of there until 6. Poor Micah - he was getting so cranky and hungry and restless after the first hour. I gave him a bottle and a snack and after that, he was kind of annoyed he was stuck in the stroller and out of food.
We actually arrived at the mall for the pictures at about 3:00 pm. Micah was asleep in his car seat, so I just sat in the car with him for an hour while he slept. He was so exhausted that I am glad he was able to take a nice long nap. We had dropped DH off at home around 2:30 so he could do some work, and I ran inside to go to the bathroom and grab my phone before we took off for the photo appointment. Luckily, Micah was sound asleep by the time we arrived at the house.
Micah actually fell asleep in the car on our way home from a birthday party! Two of the girls in Micah's playgroup celebrated their first birthday together today. The kids all played together in the basement playroom, the birthday girls made a huge mess out of cake, and a wonderful time was had by all!
Unfortunately, Micah was a bit grumpy during the birthday party because he hadn't had much of a morning nap. Just prior to the party, he had taken part 2 of his nap in the car, but he was only asleep for about 20 minutes or so. I think he was exhausted, and would have preferred to sleep for a few hours, but we woke him up right at 12 so he could go join the birthday fun.
Micah had to take his morning nap in the car because of our crazy schedule today. At 11:00, we had an appointment at the pediatrician. Micah needed to have his ears re-checked (all-clear!) and we also needed to ask him a few other questions. We were concerned about this ridge running down his head - I'm a bit concerned that some of the bones in his skull may have fused too soon. The doctor did not think it was a huge problem because his head was not misshapen, but I'm a bit concerned that we are at the front end of a problem, and I'd rather deal with it BEFORE his head starts growing funky. I'm going to bring it up again with the other doctor at our one year appointment. The doctor also said that Micah has 4 teeth trying to break through on top!! I can't believe he is going to go from a toothless wonder to a baby with 6 teeth so fast! I hope the teething goes easier this time, but I'm not hopeful. We almost gave him the h1n1 vaccination today, but the last time he was vaccinated, he ran a pretty high fever, and we did not want him sick over Thanksgiving, so we decided to wait a bit longer. Hopefully, we aren't making a mistake. He hasn't been well enough to get the shot since the doctors got it in October.
Just before his doctor's appointment, Micah took part 1 of his nap in the car. He was asleep for about 45 minutes, but absolutely would have slept another hour or so if his mommy and daddy did not torture him by waking him up to be poked by the doctor! Micah was so cranky by 10:00 am, that DH had to leave our 9:00 appointment and put him in the car to fall asleep. He was out cold by the time I returned to the car at 10:15.
You see, we were mean and forced him to nap in the car because we had another appointment at 9:00 am this morning. It was my "first" official OB appointment for this pregnancy. We had hoped to do it on a day when Micah was in daycare, but with Thanksgiving this week, the only appointment we could get was today. Part of me wishes we never went in today. You see, today was not one of my better appointments.
We got to our appointment at 9:00 am. I was checked in, left a urine sample, got weighed in (no change in weight) and then saw the new midwife who just started with the practice. She started the exam, and we were trying to ask questions. I expressed my concern about the spotting I've been having, and she took out the doppler to search for the baby's heartbeat. And she searched. And she searched. Nothing. She couldn't find the heartbeat. My heart just sunk. I know that it isn't always possible to hear the baby's heartbeat on the doppler this early on, but that is not making me feel any better right now. She talked to me a bit more, and decided that with everything going on, there was reason to do an ultrasound to confirm viability again. The midwives share the office with OBs, so she checked with the OB to see if they would fit me in on their ultrasound. Apparently, the OB in the office today is...well, a jerk. He said no, they couldn't fit me in, even for a 2 second ultrasound to check for a heartbeat. I really wanted to strangle him. At this point, I kind of lost it. I have had a bad feeling the past few weeks - if you have noticed, I really haven't talked much about this pregnancy. I've just had this sinking feeling ever since my last spotting episode. I keep trying to shake it off...and yet, I can't. I had a dream that I had a miscarriage and was having a D&C. Not a pleasant dream. My morning sickness and other symptoms just haven't been what they were with Micah. I've been trying to convince myself it meant I was pregnant with a girl, or it was because this was a natural pregnancy and not an IVF pregnancy. But, the sinking feeling has been there.
Since we could not use the in-office ultrasound (did I mention that the doctor was a prick?), they wrote me a script to go to the maternal fetal medicine center where I've had other ultrasounds done (and the high risk OB there is tracking me because of the fibroids/pre-term labor issues). They even went so far as to call over and make the appointment for me. We talked it over, and the other office could have fit me in today and put all this wondering to rest. But, it would have meant skipping out on the birthday party (and explaining why), missing Micah's ear re-check, and missing Micah's photo session, not to mention his carefully constructed car-napping schedule we had planned. When I thought about the logistics of re-scheduling everything and dealing with Micah through the ultrasound, I realized that canceling our plans for the day was probably just going to make a bigger mess for us, and would likely mean we would never get Micah's 11 month photos done. I realized that if we've lost this baby, going in today couldn't change that. If everything is fine, I've put myself through 24 hours of torture by waiting until tomorrow. The jerk doctor could have made my life easier by doing the ultrasound, but hey, I can't change that. In the long run, we learned that Micah is healthy and fit to travel this week (I'm sure if we had skipped the appointment, his ear infection would have been back full-force), we have his 10 and 11 month photos in hand, and he had a wonderful time at the birthday party today. So, I sacrificed my peace of mind for today and we scheduled the ultrasound at 9:45 tomorrow morning.
So, here I sit, waiting and wondering. Part of me is already mourning the loss of this pregnancy. I'm sure loss is always difficult - but I think the added anxiety of our infertility just seems to make this possible loss seem even more overwhelming to me. It also feels surreal - I always thought that losses early on in pregnancy are sort of ... expected. I don't mean that the loss is any less painful, but it seems to me to be the more "reasonable" or "predicted" time frame for things to go wrong. Usually accompanied by cramping and a big gush of blood. I think that loss that happens any other way is sort of ... confusing. Somehow, early and dramatic makes it so much more real and finite. Awful, but not so ambiguous. I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around this - it seems wrong that this could happen, even though I know it does all the time. I keep feeling like the miracle is slipping away, and wondering if it is a sign of what is to come. I'm dreading the thought of IUIs and IVF and the disappointments all over again, and another part of me keeps thinking "I knew it - I knew the other shoe would drop."
Perhaps this is all premature - maybe it was just too early to hear the heartbeat by doppler, and maybe my fears are just getting the best of me. I sure hope so. Tomorrow could be an awful day, or it really could bring relief and make me feel foolish for all this drama. But if I have lost this baby, Thanksgiving will never be the same again. In fact, even if it all turns out okay, I'm not sure I will ever forget how I am feeling tonight. We are supposed to spend Thursday out at my cousins' farm with my family, and then we were going to head up to visit DH's family and share the news. If things do not go well tomorrow, I'll be having a D&C on Friday. Let's hope we are on our way to see DH's family instead.
Did I mention my day began at 3:oo am when Micah woke up shrieking? Yeah - teething sucks. Poor little guy is just miserable. What a wonderful beginning to a challenging day.
18 months in review
2 weeks ago